The Congress began its election campaign in Telangana with both Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra declaring that the ruling BRS in the state and the BJP at the centre are working together to try to defeat the Congress in Telangana.
“The BJP wants BRS to win. And they are together with AIMIM. If you vote for the BJP, it is like voting for the BRS and if you vote for the BRS, you are voting for the B-team of the BJP. And the MIM is also part of this unholy alliance,” Rahul Gandhi said.
The Congress leader said the proof of their being together is that the BRS has always supported the BJP government in parliament and “there are no CBI, ED or IT cases against KCR. Whereas there are as many as 24 cases against me,” he said.
Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi started the campaign with a puja at the Ramappa temple, after which the public meeting was held at the tribal constituency of Mulugu.
Rahul Gandhi will be covering eight assembly segments in three days, meeting farmers, Singareni collieries workers and others.
“It is a battle between dorala’s (landlords) Telangana and prajala’s (people’s) Telangana,” he said. “Whereas the Congress gave you Telangana even though we knew that we would have to take a political hit because of that,” Rahul Gandhi added.
Rahul Gandhi said K Chandrashekar Rao hasn’t fulfilled his promise of three acres to landless Dalits, jobs for unemployed people and loan waiver to farmers. He said people must compare that with how the Congress has fulfilled its promises in Karnataka, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh and Himachal Pradesh.
“The best healthcare system providing Rs 25 lakh free medical treatment, buying foodgrains from farmers at best rates in Chhattisgarh, everywhere we did what we promised,” Rahul Gandhi said.
He said the Congress has announced the Mahalakshmi scheme giving Rs 2,500 to every woman, gas cylinder for Rs 500, Rythu Bharosa or Rs 15,000 annually to every farmer, Rs 12,000 annually to tenant farmers, 200 units free power under the Gruha Jyothi Scheme, Rs 5 lakh to build homes under Indiramma Illu, RS 250 square yards to Telangana martyr families, elderly and widow pension of Rs 4,000, Yuva Vikasam or Rs 5 lakh for education of youth and national status to Medaram Jatara – if the Congress forms government at the centre.
KCR at a public meeting in Medchal said it was the mistake of the Congress government that in 1956, Telangana was made a part of Andhra Pradesh, causing years of deprivation and suffering to the people of Telangana.
BJP leader Kishan Reddy said the Telangana Congress was being supported by funds from Karnataka, being collected allegedly as Telangana tax from builders, gold merchants and other businesses.